Despite the thousands of books, websites, and assessment tests out there that have been created to help people with career change and exploration, there’s still a HUGE GAPING HOLE in the system — and everybody in the business pretty much knows it.
The Achilles Heel of career change? The market is evolving much faster than these resources can keep up. And with millions of middle-aged adults now seeking to transfer into more promising lines of work, you can also no longer gear these resources exclusively toward the vantage point of a high school or college student — and suggest, naively, that people go into careers like Nuclear Physicist, Film Director, or Anthropology Professor that typically require decades of dues-paying and entry-level wages to cultivate.
For this reason, there have been very few websites (or even books) that I’ve been able to recommend strongly to my own clients in transition, given that most of the people I work with are middle-aged adults who are facing the issues outlined in the above paragraph. Recently, however, I was pleased to come across a website that seems to tackle this problem head-on. This website, InsideJobs.com, brings a fresh perspective to the career research field — combining what seems to be a very updated database of career possibilities with a simple, user-friendly interface that the average job hunter can easily get their head around.
Case in point? If you’re a professional seeking to transfer your skills into a similar field, versus reinventing yourself completely from scratch, try visiting the “Discover Jobs” section of the site and filling out the form that says “Discover jobs like a (insert your field)”. You can even identify the specific motivators (more money, more recognition, more recognition, etc.) leading you to consider making a change, in the first place. The end result? InsideJobs will generate a list of potential careers to investigate, each of which you can click on to get the full scoop, including potential salary range. And that’s not all. Should you be so inclined, you can also click on the “Career Families” link at the top of the page, as well, and browse through various clustered occupations to your heart’s content.
It’s not just the user-friendliness of the site that impressed me, however. Unlike many career websites, I was pleasantly surprised to see more “modern” career choices like Academic Interventionist, Mobile Application Developer, Geospatial Modeler, and Nurse Informatics Specialist included in some of the result sets. While I don’t have a clue where/how they acquire their career data (it’s probably a trade secret) I’m impressed that they’ve managed to find a source that includes at least a few of the burgeoning professions that have evolved in recent years. Again, too many of the sites I’ve encountered out there seem to “stop at the Stone Age” (aka 1998 or so) and completely overlook the massive range of diverse new jobs that now exist in fields such as Telecommunications, Health Care, and Information Technology.
So if you’re a professional contemplating a potential career change, give InsideJobs a whirl and see what you think. It’s not infallible, and like every resource out there, it won’t be able to tell you EXACTLY what you should be when you grow up, but it’s definitely a step in the right direction compared to the majority of career-related technology I’ve come across. As for me, should I ever decide to venture out of the career coaching profession, I’m comforted to know that I should give the fields of Employee Relations, Adoption Management, and Curriculum Specialist a pretty serious look! :)
P.S. One other neat thing about InsideJobs? While it doesn’t mention this explicitly on their website, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that the company is based right here in Seattle…